Chilly weather has begun to creep into northern Indiana, but a new restaurant specializing in soup has arrived in Mishawaka just in time to take the edge off the cold.
Zoup! is a fast-casual chain based out of Detroit with locally owned franchises spread across the northern half of the U.S. The Mishawaka franchise is owned by Granger native Kevin Pearson.
Each day, Zoup! offers 12 different soups chosen from a catalog of more than 100 recipes. Lobster bisque and chicken pot pie, both Zoup! specialties, are served every day, but the other 10 offerings rotate among soups as varied as ginger butternut squash, chicken tortilla and overstuffed bell pepper.
“Everybody loves soup, it’s such a comfort food,” general manager Chris Rodgers said.
Zoup! also offers sandwiches and salads, as well as a “Try Two” option for those who have trouble picking just one entree. Rodgers said the staff makes sure to include a vegetarian and gluten-free soup each day, and dairy-free soups are clearly labeled.
The Mishawaka location is one of two new Zoup! locations that opened Thursday, Oct. 16. (The other is in Quincy, Ill.) The Detroit-based chain now has 69 locations spread across the U.S. and Canada, and Rodgers said two more stores are scheduled to open before the end of the year — the nearest in Portage, Mich.
Rodgers said he and his colleagues have been surprised by the amount of business they received in the first few days of operation, and he is looking to hire five more employees to bring the staff up to 15.
“It’s been amazing, word of mouth has been really good. We’ve been hopping at lunch,” Rodgers said.
Zoup! is located at 4334 Grape Road, Mishawaka, by the intersection of Main and Day streets. It’s open for lunch and dinner daily, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday.